I’m sorry for the amount of money I’ve made and want to pay more taxes, an American billionaire has written in an apologetic website blog.
The message comes from Bill Gross, founder of one of the world’s largest investment funds, the Pacific Investment Management Company (PIMCO).
Gross is listed as the 55th wealthiest man in the USA on the revered Forbes magazine rich list.
PIMCO is worth around £1.4 billion as one of the leading managers in the global bond market, managing around £625 trillion of assets for investors.
Gross wrote his apology as part of a review of investment performance over the coming months.
He admits he has become rich off the backs of other people’s work and feels guilty for exploiting them to earn his mountain of cash.
Like co-billionaires Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft, and Warren Buffett, the renowned investment guru, Gross is urging the US government to take a bigger tax cut from the wealth of the nation’s richest earners.
Many already donate to charity through foundations – including Gates and Buffet.
But now aged 69 years old, Gross is also reflecting on his past and his amassed fortune.
“Rather than make money, I am joining the call for tax reforms and believe the wealthy should reverse their thinking and be grateful for what they have rather than resent what the tax authorities are taking away,” he said.
Pay more taxes
“Congratulate yourself, smoke a big cigar and enjoy some expensive wine, but appreciate your good fortune that you were born at a time when credit was free-flowing and allowed you to invest and expand your wealth and assets.
“We made out money in a time when those who borrowed had a better chance of making it than those who relied on their hands to make a living.”
He explained that he agreed with President Barack Obama who pointed out that the nation’s wealthiest people did not create the credit wave that made them rich, but rode out the good times.
“Now, it’s payback time,” said Gross. “Share your wealth by paying more tax or helping the government to reform the economy to aid growth and job creation rather than building corporate profits and personal riches.”
Gross has joined a growing legion of wealthy investors who are calling for money to go into generating real businesses that make products people want to buy, rather than diverting wealth into investments and financial services the make money but do not help the US economy in the long term.